Residence Programs

Practitioner in Residence

The School of Law and Justice’s Practitioner in Residence Programme is designed to facilitate professional engagement by inviting accomplished, respected and successful legal practitioners to Southern Cross University to do any of the following:

  • conduct research
  • hold master classes
  • deliver seminars or lectures
  • participate in moots
  • advise postgraduates
  • engage with staff, students and stakeholders.

By actively embedding a Practitioner in Residence role into the school, the School of Law and Justice publically demonstrates a commitment with the legal profession and aligns itself, squarely, with Southern Cross University's strategic priorities of community and regional engagement.

Judge in Residence

The Judge in Residence Programme offers a unique opportunity for the bench to impact, shape and influence the academic life of the School of Law and Justice, as much as it affords staff and students a singular opportunity to learn from and be advised by influential leading jurists from the region, the state, the nation and the world. It will afford its participants an opportunity to:

  • to conduct research
  • to offer lectures, master classes or seminars
  • to engage with faculty and students
  • to assist at moot courts or provide expertise to postgraduates
  • to interact with the community-at-large.

In so doing, the Judge in Residence programme will foster an on-going exchange and dialogue between the bench and the academy, drawing upon the distinguished experience of its residents to inform the School of Law and Justice’s pedagogy and scholarship, all the while enhancing the School's profile as a law school that takes the ‘law in action’ as seriously as the ‘law in books’.

Justice Francois Kunc, Andrew Rogers Lecture in Private Law and Legal Practice

The Honourable Justice François Kunc

2019: The Honourable Justice François Kunc

2 - 3 May 2019 at the Gold Coast campus

The Honourable Justice François Kunc, was appointed to the Supreme Court of New South Wales in April 2013 and sits in the Equity Division.  After graduating with degrees in Arts and Law from the University of Sydney he practised as a solicitor with Allen Allen and Hemsley from 1986.  He was called to the Bar in 1992 and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2007.  He was a leader of the commercial bar appearing in courts throughout Australia for major government, corporate and individual clients. 

An inaugural member and past President of the Law and Literature Association of Australia, Justice Kunc has had a long interest in law, language and literature. He was a member of the specialist committee which wrote the Recommended National Standards for Working with Interpreters in Courts and Tribunals under the aegis of the Judicial Council on Cultural Diversity.

Justice Kunc is currently the General Editor of The Australian Law Journal and a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Equity. Outside of the law he is the Chairman of the Layne Beachley Aim for the Stars Foundation and a director of the Opera Australia Capital Fund.

Law and the Humanities Artist in Residence

The Law and the Humanities Artist in Residence Programme will stimulate research and provide possibilities for collaborative work in current areas of interest for members of the Law School including (but not limited to):

  • law and literature
  • law and popular culture
  • cultural legal studies
  • critical jurisprudence
  • human rights
  • new legal history
  • legal anthropology
  • performance studies
  • climate justice, social justice and environmental activism.

The Law and Humanities Artist in Residence Programme constitutes a distinctive and innovative initiative on the part of the School of Law and Justice. Such an initiative highlights and complements the School's strong connection to the humanities, its commitment to social and climate justice, and its unique research and community engagement in the area of social, political and legal activism.

Professor Bernard Schlink - author - Reading The Reader

2019: Reading The Reader: In Conversation with Professor Bernhard Schlink

13 November 2019 at the Lismore Regional Gallery

A distinguished European novelist and short story writer, Professor Bernhard Schlink is best known for his international bestseller, The Reader, which became an Oscar-winning film starring Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes.

Trained as a lawyer, Professor Schlink was a judge of the Constitutional Court of the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as a Professor of Law at Humboldt University (Berlin) and Cardozo Law School (New York).

As the School of Law & Justice's Law and the Humanities Artist in Residence, Professor Schlink will be presenting a short reading from his novel, The Reader, followed by a discussion of the novel and its themes of desire, memory and guilt with Professor William MacNeil, Dean and Head of School of the School of Law & Justice, Southern Cross University.


John Reid

John Reid, Emeritus Fellow of The Australian National University

2019: John Reid, Emeritus Fellow, ANU

29 April - 10 May 2019 at the Gold Coast Campus
5 - 18 August 2019 at the Gold Coast campus

For more than three decades from 1969 to 2001, John Reid engaged with the law as a considered part of his creative practice as a graphic designer, student newspaper editor and visual artist.

From 5-18 August, John Reid will be working on his collage of Australian banknotes, Level 6, School of Law and Justice, Gold Coast campus, Southern Cross Drive, Bilinga. Drop by anytime to talk to the artist.

The subject of the banknote collage is political or enforced disappearances. The artwork was initiated in 1982 in response to Amnesty International’s Disappearance Campaign triggered by the criminal political climate in Central and South America; and by the artist’s concern about the Australian government’s relationship with Indonesia and policy on East Timor.

An enforced disappearance is the abduction of a citizen and the subsequent secret detention, torture, murder and disposal of their body by agents of the State. In most cases, it is perpetrated to suppress popular opposition to repressive economic policies maintained through aid from foreign governments who are accomplices in the economic exploitation so as to support affluent living standards in their own countries.

The intent of the artwork is to appeal for ethical vigilance of the Australian government’s foreign policies that are fueled by greed. The conceptual relationship between the artwork’s focus on economic exploitation and its medium of money serves to visually dramatise this intention. 

From 1984 to 1987, the artwork was legally contested which enhanced the impact of the work. Resolution of the legal proceedings involved the Federal Director of Public Prosecutions and the Federal Treasurer. Untitled is a process artwork. Its exhibition is performative and, in addition to the presentation of the collage, includes the creative procedures of its production in the studio space. There is no point in time when the work might be considered complete. Authorship is trans-generational. Custodial responsibility for the artwork and permission to work/rework its surface passes from one artist to another.

John Reid Artist in Residence, School of Law and Justice at SCU - August 2019

Fleur Kilpatrick, playwright. Presenting seminar at the Gold Coast Campus 7 August 2019

Fleur Kilpatrick, Playwright.

2019: Fleur Kilpatrick

7 August 2019 at the Gold Coast campus and via Zoom to other locations.

In a rising ocean of dire facts, there is an urgent need for performative fiction about our present that confronts climate crisis with irreverence, humour and absurdity. To write about climate change in a way that empowers audiences and inspires action is to find a balance between hope and despair: too much or too little of either can paralyse. 

Many artists and communicators struggle to contain the complexities of the present in their representation of climate change: getting on with life, laughing, joking, shopping, whilst living in fear. Many chose instead to approach climate change through a dystopian lens; such narratives sit within conventional dramatic structure far better than the unresolved, distress and mundanity of the present.

Through the lens of the 2017 Max Afford Award-winning play, Whale, I argue for making entertainment out of something as dire as climate emergency.  My work uses comedic tactics and absurdist structures to examine Australia’s relationship with nature and our global responsibility from new narrative viewpoints. Whale embraces this moment in time, in all its banality, silliness, humour and terror. 

Fleur Kilpatrick is an award-winning playwright and director with practice focused on environmental sustainability and care. She holds a postgraduate diploma of directing and a Masters in playwriting from the VCAM. She is a lecturer at Monash Centre for Theatre and Performance and the co-founder of Lonely Company, working to support emerging playwrights create sustainable careers.

Fleur’s plays have won the 2018 Max Afford Playwrights Award (Whale), 2016 Jill Blewett Award (Blessed, Poppy Seed Festival) and 2015 Melbourne Fringe’s Emerging Playwright Award (The City They Burned, Melbourne Fringe, Brisbane Festival).

In 2019, her new play Whale premiered at Northcote Townhall, her production of Slaughterhouse Five (which she directed and adapted) returned for a season at Theatre Works and her opera, Daphne will premier with Co Opera, SA. She is developing a new work with collaborator Sarah Walker about Australia's most contested landscapes.

In 2018, she made her mainstage debut with her play Terrestrial at State Theatre Company of South Australia and LZA Theatre in Sydney gave her 2013 play Yours the Face. In 2016 she directed Julius Caesar for Essential Theatre (Melbourne, Adelaide and Edinburgh) and Slaughterhouse Five for MUST.

She appears fortnightly on 3RRRs Smart Arts with Richard Watts and was the co-host of the podcast Contact Mic with Sarah Walker until 2018.

You can see a video of Fleur talking about Whale, made for one of the performances.

Justice Michael Kirby (image from Film Art Media

Justice Michael Kirby

2018: Daryl Dellora Film Screening and Q&A – Michael Kirby: Don’t forget the Justice Bit

16 May 2018 at the Lismore Regional Gallery

Documentary writer and director, Daryl Dellora will be our guest at the SLJ for 2 weeks from end April. We will be hosting a screening of his documentary Michael Kirby: Don’t Forget the Justice Bit followed by an informal Q&A session with the film maker afterwards. [read more about Daryl Dellora]

Filmed during and after his time on the High Court of Australia, this documentary about Justice Michael Kirby explores the personal, moral and spiritual convictions of one of our most compassionate and incisive legal minds.

Kirby was Australia’s longest serving judge. Michael Kirby was listed by the Bulletin magazine as one of the top ten creative minds, then again in the top 100 of the most influential Australians of all time and Who Weekly put him as one of the top 25 of the most beautiful people – certainly a unique honour for a High Court Judge. But Michael Kirby is a unique man. In 36 years as a judge he repeatedly did the one thing that judges are not supposed to do – he spoke publicly on an enormous range of social, political, scientific, economic, religious and humanitarian issues.

This film shows the public face of Michael Kirby on the High Court, the private face at home with his father Donald, his late mother Jean, his partner Johan and his siblings. It also reveals his spiritual side and his lasting connection to Anglicanism. [more about this documentary]

Through its Law and the Humanities Artist in Residence Programme, the SLJ will invite artists of all persuasions—literary, artistic, filmic, televisual, performance--with an interest in social justice and the ways in which law and art could and do intersect in the pursuit of these goals [read more about the program]

Mr Lionel Murphy (image from

Justice Lionel Murphy

2018: Daryl Dellora Film Screening and Q&A – Mr Neal is Entitled to be an Agitator, a film about Justice Lionel Murphy

9 May 2018 at the Enterprise Lab, Lismore Campus

Documentary writer and director, Daryl Dellora will be our guest at the SLJ for 2 weeks from end April. We will be hosting screenings of two of his films, the first of which is Mr Neal is Entitled to be an Agitator which won the Australian Human Rights Award in 1991. [read more about Daryl Delora]

In the last four years of his life, Lionel Murphy was at the centre of an historic battle to retain his position on the High Court in Australia. While the film concentrates on this period and the events leading up to it, in a wider sense, it uses the dramatic story of Murphy as a vehicle to consider some more fundamental issues about law. The film tackles the problem of police and security surveillance of the individual in Australian society and in particular, of prominent political and legal figures [more about the documentary].

Lionel Murphy QC was an Australian politician and judge. He was a Senator for New South Wales from 1962 to 1975, serving as Attorney-General in the Whitlam Government, and then sat on the High Court from 1975 until his death in 1986. 

Through its Law and the Humanities Artist in Residence Programme, the SLJ will invite artists of all persuasions—literary, artistic, filmic, televisual, performance--with an interest in social justice and the ways in which law and art could and do intersect in the pursuit of these goals [read more about the program].

Mr Neal is entitled to be an Agitator, Justice Lionel Murphy